When to walk away from a sale

When should a Salesperson walk away from a sale?

I have walked away from many deals in the past and I will continue to do so if it is not the right fit, or it feels wrong. While writing this I’m taken back to the very first time I walked away from a sale, actually, I actively discouraged the person to buy.

I moved back to Ireland from Guernsey in the Channel Islands in the 1990’s and it was the height of a recession. The only thing I was qualified to do was in hospitality and I could not find any employment. So, I took a job in sales, something I thought I would never do. However, this was not any sale job, this was selling life insurance, door to door, commission only. I thought, “welcome to sales”!!!

Back then we went into the office on a Monday, took out the yellow pages and hit the phones to make appointments, 100+ calls a day to get three, maybe four appointments. On one of these appointments my BIG boss came out with me.

So, we met at Michael Mc—– house (a modest terrace home south of Dublin) and the first thing I noticed was that the outside was very unkempt. When Michael greeted us, he was so lovely, and we were given tea and biscuits. On the icebreaking part of the meeting, it transpired that he knew my father and that was the reason he agreed to meet.

The sales pitch began, and we were on fire… I presented the pack brilliantly and it was going so well, and he was “putting pen to paper”, when his son came down the stairs and asked for (I think new school shoes, I can’t remember) and the response from Michael was something along the lines of “make do as we can’t afford to buy new shoes at the moment”.

At this point I took the contract from him and said something along the lines of “Michael, on second thoughts I am not sure that this is the right policy, based on what you told us I will need to go back and do a little more research.” and we left.

I knew that he was over committing and because of the relationship he once had with my father he felt obliged to continue.

When we were outside my boss “ripped into me” with nearly every expletive you can imagine. He said, “You will never make it in sales as you clearly don’t have what it takes, the killer instinct, you have just ripped up £2,000.” At this I told him to shove it and I went back to London.

When to walk away from a sale

As a salesperson, do you know when it’s time to walk away from a sale?

Walking away can be a tough decision, particularly when you’ve invested your time and energy into building a relationship with a prospect. Having said that, there are some situations where it can be the right choice.

Here are 6 common reasons to walk away from a sale as a salesperson:

1. Ethical Concerns

Ethics in sales refers to behaviours that ensure that every customer is treated with respect, fairness, honesty and integrity.

Some common examples of ethical issues in sales include:

  • Selling a product rather than a solution
  • Telling only part of the truth  
  • Lacking accountability

If the product or service you’re selling doesn’t meet the needs of the customer or if it’s not the right fit for them, it’s best to walk away rather than push them to purchase something they don’t need.

2. Unrealistic Demands

If the customer is making demands that your company can’t fulfil or that would compromise your integrity, it’s better to walk away than to promise something you can’t deliver.

Some of the things salespeople should avoid when a customer has unrealistic expectations include: Arguing with the customer, losing your patience, not actively listening, not looking for other options for the customer.

3. Lack of Respect

Occasionally as a salesperson you may encounter a customer who is disrespectful, demanding or who comes across as rude. The old saying “The customer is always right” is not always the case.

If a customer or prospect is disrespectful or abusive toward you, it’s not worth sacrificing your dignity or well-being for a sale, and it’s time to walk away.

Remaining professional when dealing with difficult customers

4. Price Objections

If the customer is solely focused on price and unwilling to see the value in your product or service, it may not be worth your time to continue the sale.

Objections in sales are inevitable, and a tailored Sales Training Program can assist sales teams with effective objection handling techniques that they can utilise when customers raise objections. However, if your customer is only objecting on price, and you have done your best to overcome their objections, it could be in your best interest to walk away from the sale.

5. Unreasonable Expectations

As a salesperson, on occasion you may encounter customers who have unrealistic expectations. For example, they might push for an unrealistic timeline that would require you to cut corners or compromise quality. When this happens, it’s better to walk away than to risk damaging your reputation.

If there’s a significant gap between what the customer expects and what you can realistically deliver, it’s best to be upfront about it and potentially walk away rather than disappoint them later.

6. The Customer cannot see the Value of your Product or Service

It’s the salesperson’s responsibility to show their prospect the value that their product or service will have. If a prospect can’t clearly see value, they will not buy.

When you have made attempts to show your prospect the features, benefits and value of your product or service, and they still aren’t convinced, it could be time to walk away.

A good tip to ensure you are demonstrating value is to reflect on the conversations you have with prospects. This way you can learn from them and improve your value proposition.

Walking away from any sale is never a good feeling. But remember, walking away doesn’t necessarily mean entirely giving up on your customer. It could simply mean postponing the sale until a better fit or solution is found, or referring them to a colleague or competitor who may be better able to meet their needs.

Sometimes as a salesperson it's best to walk away from the sale

Contact KONA today to find out how we can help to strengthen your sales team with a tailored Sales Training Program.

Call 1300 611 288 or email
info@kona.com.au


After 30 + Years I became an Overnight Success

Grinding It Out – the Real Key to Sales Success

I’m sure some of you are sick of hearing me say this but yet again I was called “lucky” and once again I responded: “I work bloody hard to ensure my “luck” because day in and day out I “Grind it out.”

This is the same if I am practicing my Krav Maga or selling, I don’t expect to receive benefits if I have not put in the work.

Grinding it out means consistently putting in the effort day in and day out, which is a fundamental aspect of achieving success in sales. While natural talent and charisma can certainly help, it’s often the dedication to the grind that separates top performers from the rest. Here’s why:

Activity = Results

Persistence Pays Off – “Activity = Results”

The best sales trainers will tell you that sales success doesn’t happen overnight.

It’s about making countless calls, sending numerous emails, and meeting with potential clients regularly.

Each rejection is a step closer to a “yes” and grinding it out means not giving up in the face of setbacks.

Building Relationships

Sales is as much about building relationships as it is about pitching products or services. Consistently showing up, being reliable, and providing value to clients helps to build trust and rapport over time.

Some of the benefits of building strong relationships in sales include:

  • Influencing repeat purchases
  • Developing trust
  • Increased customer loyalty

Continuous Learning

The world of sales is always evolving, with new techniques, technologies, and trends emerging constantly. Those who grind it out are committed to continuously learning and adapting their approach to stay ahead of the curve.

Sales Training can help your team by giving them access to experienced sales trainers who can assist them with learning new skills and refining existing skills, as well as improving their communication and increasing productivity, ultimately leading to an improved overall customer experience.

Resilience and Consistency

Rejection is inevitable in sales, and it can take a toll on morale. Grinding it out requires resilience—the ability to bounce back from setbacks, learn from failures, and keep moving forward.

Consistency breeds success – to be successful in sales, you need consistency rather than occasional bursts of brilliance. It’s about showing up every day, doing the work, and gradually building momentum over time.

Hope is not a sales strategy.

Setting and Achieving Goals

Grinding it out in sales involves setting clear goals and relentlessly pursuing them. Consistent effort is essential for achieving success. Whether it’s:

  • A daily call quota
  • Monthly sales target, or
  • A long-term career objective

Putting in the effort to achieve your goals rather than just setting them and “hoping” for the best can go a long way to being successful in sales.

Remember, “Hope is not a sales strategy”!

Ultimately, while talent and skill certainly play a role in sales success, the real key is the willingness to put in the hard work day after day, even when it’s challenging or discouraging. That’s what separates the top performers from the rest of the pack.

Quote about success from Ray Kroc.

Contact KONA today to discuss how we can help your sales team achieve success through our tailored Sales Training Programs.

Call 1300 611 288 or email
info@kona.com.au


The “No BS” Way to Train Salespeople

For a Sales Trainer to Train salespeople in a “no BS” way, they require a straightforward and results-driven methodology, that addresses the challenges and dynamics of sales in the real world.

Out in the field, there is not always a “manual” to refer to, and every customer is different. With many “off the shelf, by the book” training programs, all of the hard work and learnings can be forgotten by your team shortly after.

So, how can your sales trainer provide your sales team with the tools they need to make it in real world selling situations?

The answer is simple – focus on Sales Training Techniques that will stick.

KONA Sales Training Workshop
A KONA Sales Training Workshop

Effective Sales Training

An effective sales training program can make a huge difference when it comes to the morale and performance of your sales team, as well as motivating salespeople and sales managers to get out of their comfort zone.

What are the benefits that come with an effective Sales Training Program?

Productivity

Increasing your sales team’s confidence can result in better productivity as well as allowing staff to make important decisions without the constant guidance of their manager.

Sales training can also offer insight into automating sales processes to free up more of your team’s time.

Teamwork

Effective sales training can bring your team together, encourage collaboration, as well as creating a more positive work environment. Improving staff morale and creating a sense of community among staff members can also improve sales performance.


Staff and Customer satisfaction

Training equips salespeople with useful skills and knowledge that can improve their interactions with customers. This can then lead to greater customer satisfaction. When more customers are satisfied with the service they receive, salespeople are more likely to feel happy and fulfilled at work.

Communication skills

Both Salespeople and Sales Managers can learn and develop new skills from an effective sales training program. Sales training can improve everyone’s ability to think on their feet and make efficient decisions.

The characteristics of a good vs. bad salesperson.

Use success stories to train and motivate

A great way to motivate salespeople, especially those who are relatively new to the field, is to use storytelling as part of your training program.

The best sales training programs will include Success stories from senior salespeople or trainers. They can be inspirational and entertaining, and they are more likely to leave a memorable, lasting impression on a sales team.

Most effective are stories and case studies that show examples of what did and didn’t work in different scenarios, and those that showcase the entire sales process, from initial enquiry to closing.

Statistics can also be a useful tool when training and motivating a sales team. 

Once you have told the success story and the outcome, you can break down the process into steps that the team can replicate and try with their own sales.

Offer Training Refreshers

An important aspect of training that is often neglected is offering training refreshers.

Even after the most successful training programs, it’s easy for teams to forget what they have learned when they are back on the front line.

The best sales trainers will create smaller snippets of the training for refreshers that can help align with our brain’s natural capability to recall and retain information.

How often employees want training vs. how often employers deliver training

Sales Coaching

Sales coaching after training can make a big impact on your sales team and will improve retention rates following the training they have received.

Some of the benefits of coaching your sales team after training include:

  • Improved performance
  • Better customer-relationships
  • Improved sales productivity
  • Increased staff-retention
  • Increased skill development

One of your sales team’s main objectives should be to learn how to apply new techniques, make changes where necessary and measure their results.

To get the most out of a Sales Training program, you need to give your salespeople the right tools, and most importantly, lead by example.

Contact KONA to discuss how we can tailor a Sales Training Program to your Sales Team!

Call 1300 611 288 or email info@kona.com.au


Pipeline or Perish

The mantra “Pipeline or Perish” takes centre stage in the realm of Sales and Business.

For companies navigating the competitive sales industry, your Sales Pipeline isn’t just a tool; it’s a lifeline, determining the fate of your business in a world where adaptability and efficiency reign supreme.

So, if you want to thrive in Sales, why is it important to leverage your Sales Pipeline? The first step is to understand the Pipeline.

Sales Pipeline Funnel

Understanding the Sales Pipeline

A sales pipeline is an organised and visual way of keeping track of potential buyers as they progress through the purchasing process.

The sales pipeline is a strategic roadmap that guides your team from prospecting to closing deals. It’s a dynamic system that demands attention, proactive management, and a keen understanding of your customer’s journey.

The stages of a Sales Pipeline

1. Prospecting and Lead Generation

The sales journey begins with identifying potential customers.

An effective sales pipeline starts with a robust lead generation strategy, ensuring a steady influx of prospects.

Without a consistent flow of leads, your pipeline may run dry.

2. Qualification and Engagement

Once leads are in the pipeline, they need to be qualified. This involves:

  • Understanding their needs
  • Uncovering their challenges
  • Assessing their fit with your products or services

Engaging prospects at this stage is crucial for building relationships and moving them through the pipeline.

5 reasons why you should qualify your customers.

3. Proposal and Closing

The proposal stage is where you present tailored solutions to your prospects.

A well-nurtured pipeline positions your team to confidently make proposals that resonate with the prospect’s needs. Closing the deal is the culmination of a successful journey through the pipeline.

4. Post-Sale Relationship Building

The sales pipeline doesn’t end at closing. Post-sale relationship building ensures customer satisfaction, encourages repeat business, and sets the stage for referrals.

Neglecting this aspect can lead to churn and missed opportunities for growth.

Pipeline or Perish

Why use your Sales Pipeline?

Predictability

Your sales pipeline provides a clear view of potential revenue and allows for accurate forecasting. Without utilising this tool, businesses operate “in the dark”, unable to predict or plan for future success.

Resource Allocation

A well-managed pipeline enables efficient allocation of resources. It helps you identify areas of strength and weakness in your sales process, allowing for targeted improvements and optimisation of resources.

Customer-Centricity

By understanding where each prospect stands in the pipeline, you can tailor your interactions to meet their specific needs, ensuring a positive and personalised customer experience.

Meme about providing an excellent customer experience.

Competitive Edge

Typically in sales, speed and efficiency are paramount. Using your sales pipeline allows you to respond quickly to opportunities and challenges, giving you a competitive edge over those who neglect this crucial aspect.

In the relentless pursuit of success, businesses must recognise that “Pipeline or Perish” is more than a cautionary phrase—it’s a call to action.

Your sales pipeline is the key to navigating the complexities of the modern marketplace, ensuring not only survival but sustained growth and prosperity. Embrace the power of your sales pipeline, and let it be the driving force that propels your business forward in the face of challenges and uncertainties.

Contact KONA today to discuss tailored Sales Pipeline Training for your Sales Team!

Call 1300 611 288 or email
info@kona.com.au


You can’t handle the truth, but a fortune awaits if you can

Truth – the unspoken reality where in Sales, the famous line “You can’t handle the truth” takes on a whole new meaning.

I sometimes, not often thankfully, get push back from salespeople when I challenge them for “over promising” or blatantly misleading the customer with “white lies” or even damn right mistruths.

The Sales Industry is often filled with glossy pitches, exaggerated claims, and a constant dance between what’s said and what’s unsaid. But what if, instead of shying away from the uncomfortable truths in sales, we embraced them?

"You can't handle the truth" meme

The Uncomfortable Truths in Sales

In Sales, perception often trumps reality. The pressure to meet targets, impress clients, and outshine competitors can lead salespeople and businesses to bend the truth.

However, this short-term gain can result in long-term consequences, eroding trust and damaging relationships.

The uncomfortable truth is that authenticity and transparency are rare commodities in the sales world, but they are precisely what set the stage for lasting success.

Internal Wealth – Building Credibility

The first step to embracing the truth in sales is acknowledging the uncomfortable realities. This requires:

  • Firstly, a real respect for the customer
  • Gratitude for them giving you the opportunity.
  • A deep understanding of the product or service being sold.
  • Recognising its strengths and weaknesses

Sales professionals who can honestly communicate these aspects build credibility and trust with their clients. This internal wealth, built on authenticity, becomes a foundation for success and customer loyalty.

Truthfulness is a powerful tool for salespeople. Consistently embracing the truth not only proves your credibility but also positions you as a trusted advisor, assisting with building positive and productive relationships with your clients.

Trust and credibility go hand in hand.

External Wealth – Growing Genuine Relationships

In a sea of sales pitches and polished presentations, a genuine connection with clients stands out. The fortune that awaits in sales is not just financial; it’s the wealth of authentic relationships.

Clients appreciate honesty, even when it involves admitting limitations. By being transparent about what your product or service can genuinely offer, you pave the way for trust, repeat business, and word-of-mouth referrals.

The Journey to Truthful Selling

Product Mastery: Invest time in understanding your product or service inside-out. Acknowledge its strengths and limitations to present a realistic picture to your clients.

Active Listening: Understand your clients’ needs and concerns. Actively listen to their feedback, and address any issues with transparency.

Long-Term Vision: Shift the focus from short-term gains to long-term relationships. Building trust may take time, but it forms the base of sustained success.

Constant Learning: Stay informed about industry trends and changes. Being knowledgeable allows you to provide accurate and timely information to your clients.

Telling the truth in sales.

In the competitive sales industry, the truth is a rare commodity. Yet, those who dare to confront the uncomfortable realities and embrace authenticity are on the path to a fortune that transcends mere financial gains.

Internal credibility and external relationships built on truth are the keys to sustained success in sales. So, the next time you’re tempted to embellish, remember: the fortune you seek lies in the honest truth.

Contact KONA today to discuss how we can help your Sales Team achieve success.

Call 1300 611 288 or email
info@kona.com.au


Prospecting in 2024.

How can I effectively prospect and find potential customers in 2024?

Sales Prospecting for Lead Generation

Sales prospecting is the process of searching for potential customers and making contact with those who “qualify” to purchase your product or service. Prospecting lays the foundation for the whole sales process as it is the first step of the customer journey.

Lead Contact Ratio

The chances of getting hold of a lead increases 100 times if they are contacted on the date and time with highest response rates since most recipients are active at night.

Multiple contacts and Social Media Dependency

•             Only 2% of sales are made on the first contact

•             3% of sales are made on the second contact

•             5% of sales are made on the third contact; and

•             10% of sales are made on the fourth contact.

Also, 48% of online users rely on social media presence whenever they decide to purchase a product. So, it’s best to reach out to prospects in various ways to get higher contact ratio and eventually close a sale.

Australian Content Marketing Tactic Usage graph.

Delayed buying response

Patience is a key to becoming successful in sales. Why? Around 63% of prospect who requested for information are going to buy for your products or services for the next 3 months. Others might take up to a year or two to actually purchase something.

“55% of B2B buyers search for products or vendors on social media because of word of mouth or referrals “ – Meltwater

Prospecting Techniques

‍There are many prospecting techniques that can be used. These techniques range from researching prospective leads online to cold calling and everything in between.

The choice of technique can depend on the salesperson’s strengths and circumstances. Although, typically the most effective tactics are adapted over time with practice and the right training.

Graph showing how salespeople typically spend their day.

Prospecting in 2024 – 10 effective techniques

Let’s take a look at some prospecting techniques that we think will be most effective in 2024. Keep in mind however, that prospecting in sales is different for everyone, so don’t hesitate to try different things and see what works best for you.

1. Create Buyer-Personas

In sales, it’s important to understand your ideal target customer. By creating Customer Profiles or Buyer Personas, you can increase your chances of prospecting to the right audience and ultimately closing more deals.

This process typically involves:

  • Researching demographics
  • Considering behavioural characteristics of your target audience
  • Narrowing down the details
  • Using your buyer personas in your marketing

2. Do your Research

This step of the prospecting process involves getting a detailed understanding of your potential leads.

This specific information can make your pitch more effective and personal, which will help to make you stand out from the crowd amongst a number of generic pitches.

Research will help you to understand:

  • Who is and is not buying your product or service
  • What motivates your customers
  • Whether or not they are loyal to your brand

3. Utilise Social Media

‍Social media is becoming an increasingly powerful tool when it comes to sales.

Social media allows you to engage with customers, as well as seeing what people are saying about your business.

Social media is great for advertising and running promotions.

Using social media effectively can help your business in many ways. To name a few:  

  • Attracting new customers
  • Getting your brand image out there
  • Gives customers an avenue for providing feedback and reviewing your product or service

Social platforms such as Facebook, and LinkedIn help you gain access to numerous potential leads, and allow your advertising to reach further than other marketing avenues. This makes it easier to connect with prospects in a personal and engaging way.

4. Warm Calling

‍Unlike a Cold Call, Warm Calls are when you reach out to prospects who already know of your business in some way.

Whilst ‍Cold Calling is still a valuable prospecting technique, Cold Calls usually work best when used in conjunction with other strategies.

When prospects already have an idea of what you have to offer, Warm Calls are more likely to lead to successful sales deals.

5. Personalise your approach

No matter your preferred prospecting technique, having a personalised message immediately assists in building strong relationships and beginning the emotional contract with your customer.

Email remains a powerful sales prospecting strategy. And luckily enough for salespeople, in today’s digital world, it is easier than ever to personalise emails going out to your database.

The power of LinkedIn Social Selling.

6. The Power of LinkedIn

Social media is quickly becoming the key to social-selling.

LinkedIn allows you to build your brand profile and establish a reputation with your customers as a trusted expert in your field. And as an effective lead generation platform, LinkedIn is the ideal place to connect with potential customers and build relationships.

7. Using Data and Analytics

Leveraging sales data and analytics is an important prospecting technique as it helps in making decisions, prioritising and measuring the results of sales tactics.

Sales and marketing data can give you insight into:

  • Customer trends
  • Patterns
  • The needs of your customers

Use data to your advantage to enhance your prospecting efforts.

8. Word-of-mouth Referrals

‍Referrals open you up to new opportunities when it comes to prospecting.

Did you know that studies have shown an average of 13% of all sales are due to word-of-mouth referrals.

Establishing trust and strong relationships with your customers can give you the opportunity to ask them for referrals, and reach potential leads outside of your network.

9. The importance of Planning

‍Proper planning and preparation before prospecting allows you to establish your goals and strategies.

This means you will have clarity on how you can achieve your goals and what steps you need to take.

Planning helps your sales team to:

  • Recognise their target audience
  • Establish a business strategy
  • Make prospecting efforts more effective
  • Ensure communication is professional and organised

10. Offer Incentives

‍Offering incentives can be a great way to increase your chances of making a sale.

Some examples of incentives include:

  • No-obligation consultations
  • Limited time discounts and offers
  • Exclusive access to new products or services

The main goal for most businesses is to boost revenue. By offering customers incentives, you can encourage them to buy, leading to increased sales and revenue.  

By trying out these techniques in the new year, your sales team can boost their efforts and optimise their sales strategy. Remember, sales prospecting is different for everyone, so don’t forget to try new things and find out which techniques work best for you.

Contact KONA to kick start the new year for your sales team and have a strong start to 2024!

Call 1300 611 288 or Email info@kona.com.au


How to close the sales year and have a strong start to the new year

The end of the year can be a hectic time for Salespeople. December is a time when most people are focused on doing their Christmas shopping and making plans for the new year.

However, salespeople are concerned about hitting their yearly sales targets. If your end of year sales campaigns haven’t made much of an impact this year, it can make the holiday season a particularly stressful time.

But what if we told you that the year doesn’t have to end on a negative?

That’s right, with enough focus, a strategic plan, and an effective and experienced Sales Trainer, you can end the year on a positive note, and most of all, enjoy the holiday season.

End of year for Sales Leaders

For sales leaders, closing the sales year successfully and setting the stage for a strong start to the new year requires strategic planning, effective execution, and a focus on key areas. Firstly “plan your activity year. As a sales manager you should be planning to spend 60% of your time with your team, driving and pushing results.

  • Conduct a thorough review of the current year’s performance. Analyse sales metrics, revenue figures, and key performance indicators (KPIs).
  • Identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. Understand what worked well and areas that need improvement.
  • Establish realistic and measurable sales goals for the upcoming year. Ensure that these goals align with overall company objectives.
  • Break down annual goals into quarterly, monthly, and weekly targets for better tracking and accountability.
  • Assess the effectiveness of current sales strategies and tactics. Identify what contributed to success and what needs adjustment.
  • Consider emerging trends, customer preferences, and changes in the market that might impact sales strategies.
  • Recognise and celebrate the achievements of the sales team during the current year. This boosts morale and motivation.
  • Conduct team-building activities to foster a positive and collaborative environment.
  • Identify areas where the sales team could benefit from additional sales training or skill development. This may include product knowledge, objection handling, or negotiation skills.
  • Invest in professional development programs to enhance the team’s capabilities.
  • Streamline and optimise sales processes to improve efficiency. This may involve updating CRM systems, revising sales scripts, or re-evaluating lead qualification criteria.
  • Seek feedback from the sales team to identify bottlenecks and areas for improvement.
  • Develop strategies to upsell or cross-sell to existing customers, increasing the lifetime value of each client.
  • Introduce incentives and rewards for achieving specific sales targets. This could include bonuses, recognition, or other perks to motivate the sales team.
  • Consider running sales contests to add excitement and foster healthy competition.
  • Develop a detailed sales plan for the upcoming year that outlines strategies, tactics, and resource requirements.
  • Communicate the plan clearly to the sales team and ensure alignment with the overall business strategy.
  • Regularly monitor sales performance against set targets. Implement a system for tracking progress and adjusting strategies as needed.
  • Stay agile and be ready to adapt to changes in the market or internal dynamics.
Don't underestimate Sales Activity in December. Wrap up loose ends to close more sales before the end of year.

Don’t underestimate Sales Activity during December

Many salespeople make the mistake of thinking that sales slow down in December.

On the contrary, the best sales trainers will know that the last few weeks of December can have some of the highest conversion rates of the year.

While many salespeople choose to take time off during the holidays, they could be missing opportunities, as many people are still around for holiday sales!

There are always sales to be made, especially when businesses typically offer markdowns during this time. A good salesperson acknowledges that they will have to work a little harder during the holiday season to see results. While your prospects are slowing down, you can take this opportunity to make extra calls when possible and strengthen that emotional contract.

This will lead you to closing more deals before the end of the year. And if not, it will at least give you a starting point to pick up from in the new year!

The importance of Pipeline Management

Deals that you know for sure aren’t going to be closed in December can be a distraction.

Do you want to:

  • Improve Sales Performance?
  • Have more consistency with Sales numbers?

Pipeline Management is the answer you are looking for.

As we move towards the end of the year, having too many deals in your pipeline can be counter productive. It can lead your focus away from the right deals, and leave you wasting time on deals that are going to be a slow burn.

Here are some tips to consider when tidying up your December Pipeline:

  • Does the prospect want or need your product or service?
  • How urgently do they need your product or service – can it wait until the new year?

If you’re still unsure, consider a quick follow up call to decide if it is a ‘dead lead’ or not. Don’t be afraid to be direct. Save everyone time and ask the prospect whether it is likely they will make a decision before the end of year, or if you should follow them up next year – This will help with setting you up for a good start to the new year.

It’s always worth taking the time to tidy up your Pipeline, to help with keeping you on track towards the end of year and beyond.

Tidy up your Sales Pipeline at the end of the year.

Appreciate your Sales Team

It’s important to acknowledge and appreciate your sales team and the hard work they put in, especially at the end of the year.

Some benefits of showing appreciation to your sales team include:

  • Increasing morale – Salespeople love to receive recognition, particularly when they meet or exceed their targets or close a big deal.
  • Motivating your team – By ensuring your team are motivated, your employees will feel inspired to work harder towards reaching their goals.
  • Boosting confidence – When a salesperson is confident, they’re more likely to win leads, and not take it personally when they don’t.
  • Making the team feel valued – Sales Teams who feel valued are typically more motivated to succeed and have increased job satisfaction rates.

It’s a good idea to celebrate each person for what made them stand-out, rather than having just one ‘Salesperson of the year’.

Some ways you can show your appreciation to your team include:

  • Offering incentives
  • Rewarding success
  • Organising a team lunch or dinner
  • Organising unique awards for each person

Prepare for the New Year

The way you end the sales year can strongly impact your start to the new year.

The habits you make will likely carry over into next year, so it’s important that you end the year on a positive, to prepare you for the next.

Investing in professional development including Sales Training, Sales Management Training, or Sales Pipeline Training can be a great way to start the new year on a positive note, and get the team motivated for a great year of sales. Training is also a good way of getting the team to break old habits that may have held them back this year, and learn new strategies and techniques to boost their sales in the new year.

Don’t make the mistake of giving up on meeting sales targets before the end of the year.

Take the time to plan out how you are going to tackle the holiday season in sales to end the year on a high note and have a strong start to 2024. Engage with one of KONA’s Sales Trainers today!

Find out how KONA can help your Sales Team have a strong start to the new year by locking in your tailored Sales Training Program today!  

Call 1300 611 288 or Email info@kona.com.au


The Best Australian Sales Training Providers according to Google

Google, Google on the wall, who is the best Sales and Leadership Trainer of them ALL?

A great deal of research is conducted into many industries, but the Sales Training industry seems to be left to its own devices.

Unless the “unsuspecting” business leaders do the research that I have done below, they are potentially hiring people with no background or track record. Also, there are no governing bodies to help them.

Many so called “sales trainers” are people who couldn’t cut it and then decided to set up a “training” business. Most only last a few months, but long enough to do real damage to an important industry.

Determining the best sales and leadership training company can depend on your company's needs.

Determining the “best” sales and leadership training companies can be subjective and may depend on specific needs, preferences, and the industry you’re in. However, I can provide you with a list of 14 reputable companies in Australia along with some reasons why they are well-regarded:

KONA has a 5 star google rating with 25 reviews.

1. The KONA Group Australia – 5 Star Google rating with 26 reviews

www.kona.com.au

The KONA Group is Australian owned and is known for its 20+ years heritage of providing highly tailored Sales, Leadership, Negotiation, and growth effectiveness methodologies with real life experiences with fortune 500 companies.

2. SWISH Sales Coaching Sydney– 5 Star Google rating with 16 reviews

www.swishsalescoaching.com

SWISH sales coaching in Sydney claims to teach you the secrets to sales success using the techniques and strategies employed by the world’s top 1% of salespeople.

3. FranklinCovey Australia – 5 Star Google rating with 6 reviews

www.franklincovey.com.au

FranklinCovey is known for its time-tested leadership and personal effectiveness methodologies, such as the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.

4. PD Training Australia – 5 Star Google rating with 4 reviews

pdtraining.com.au

Their purpose is to help your organisation provide training and development to its people that is on target, fun, retained and above all helps them achieve their goals.

5. Healthy Business Builder – 5 Star Google rating with 2 reviews

www.healthybusinessbuilder.com.au

Build a reputation on experience in business giving customers access to proven marketing and sales strategies that will grow a healthy business.
The main objective is to help/guide business owners to stay focused and remain on target, build networking and business skills, manage time more effectively, reduce stress and increase profit. Mandate is to give your company more direction in setting strategic goals.

6. SalesStar Australia – 5 Star Google rating with 1 review  

www.salesstar.com

SalesStar specialises in sales training and coaching, offering programs that aim to boost sales performance and revenue.

7. Institute of Managers and Leaders (IML) – 5 Star Google rating with 1 review

managersandleaders.com.au

IML offers leadership development programs and resources and is known for its commitment to promoting ethical leadership.

8. Dale Carnegie Australia – No Google reviews to refer to.

www.dalecarnegietraining.com.au

Dale Carnegie has a long history of providing leadership and sales training, with a focus on interpersonal skills, communication, and self-confidence.

9. Leadership Management Australia (LMA) – No Google reviews to refer to.

www.lma.biz

LMA offers a comprehensive range of leadership and management programs designed to develop practical skills and drive organisational success.

10. AIM (Australian Institute of Management) – No Google reviews to refer to.

www.aim.com.au

AIM is a well-respected institution that provides a wide range of management and leadership courses, along with networking opportunities.

11. Sales Ethos – No Google reviews to refer to.

www.salesethos.com.au

Sales Ethos focuses on sales training and consultative selling techniques to help businesses improve their sales processes and results.

12. RedSeed – No Google reviews to refer to.

www.redseed.com

RedSeed specialises in retail sales training, with a focus on e-learning solutions and improving customer service skills.

13. The Sales Edge – No Google reviews to refer to.

https://the-salesedge.com

The Sales Edge provides practical sales training programs that help sales professionals close deals and build long-term customer relationships.

14. ProSales Connection – No Google reviews to refer to.

www.prosalesconnection.com

ProSales Connection offers a range of sales training and consulting services, with a focus on lead generation and pipeline management.

The reasons why these companies are considered among the top sales training companies include:

  • Their track record of success
  • The quality of their training materials and methodologies
  • Experienced trainers
  • Their ability to tailor programs to meet the specific needs of their clients

Additionally, client reviews and testimonials play a significant role in determining their reputation in the industry.

Google reviews can help you to choose a training provider.

How do you choose a supplier?

To find the best fit for your organisation’s training or professional development needs, it’s important to conduct thorough research, consider your specific goals, and possibly consult with representatives from these companies to discuss your requirements in more detail.

Choosing the best sales training and leadership company is crucial for the success of your sales team and your business. Here are some steps to help you select the right sales training provider:

Identify Your Needs:

Before you start searching for a sales training company, assess your specific needs and goals. Determine what areas of sales you want to improve, such as:

  • Prospecting
  • Closing deals
  • Objection handling
  • Customer relationship management

Define Your Budget:

Determine how much you can allocate to sales training. Consider both the direct costs of training and the potential returns on investment (ROI) from improved sales performance.

Research Potential Providers:

Start by researching potential sales training providers online. Look for companies or individuals with a strong reputation in the industry.

Check Credentials and Experience:

Evaluate the credentials and experience of the trainers. Look for trainers who have a track record of success in sales or extensive experience in sales training.

Some testimonials about Training from the KONA Group.

Read Reviews and Testimonials:

Look for reviews and testimonials from previous clients. This can provide insights into the effectiveness and quality of the training programs.

Request References:

Ask the sales training company for references from past clients. Contact these references to get feedback on their experiences and results achieved through the training.

Assess Training Content:

Review the content of the training programs offered. Ensure that the training materials align with your specific needs and goals. Look for a comprehensive curriculum that covers all relevant aspects of sales and leadership.

Delivery Methods:

Consider the delivery methods used by the provider. Some training programs are delivered in-person, while others are offered online or through a blended approach. Choose the format that suits your team’s preferences and logistics.

Customisation Options:

Determine whether the training can be customised to address your unique challenges and industry-specific requirements. Customisation can make the training more effective.

Evaluate Support and Resources:

Inquire about the post-training support and resources offered by the provider. Will they provide ongoing coaching, access to materials, or additional resources to reinforce the training?

ROI Measurement:

Ask the provider how they measure the ROI of their training programs. A reputable provider should be able to provide a clear framework for tracking and evaluating the impact of the training on your sales team’s performance.

Conduct Interviews:

If possible, conduct interviews with the trainers or representatives of the potential training provider. This will give you a chance to ask specific questions and assess their expertise and communication style.

Compare the costs of different training providers.

Compare Costs:

Compare the costs of different training providers while considering the value and quality they offer.

Don’t simply choose the cheapest option, as quality and results should be the primary considerations.

Seek Feedback from Your Sales Team:

Involve your sales team in the decision-making process.

Get their input on the potential training providers and programs to ensure that they are comfortable with the choice.

Make a Decision:

Based on your research, evaluations, and budget considerations, make an informed decision on the sales training provider that best fits your needs.

Remember that the success of your sales training program depends on the quality of the provider and the commitment of your sales team to actively participate and apply what they’ve learned. Keep communication open and continually assess the effectiveness of the training to make necessary adjustments.

Things to be aware of when choosing a supplier:

The effectiveness of sales training providers can vary widely, and what is considered the “best” provider may vary depending on your specific needs and goals. However, here are some general pros and cons to consider when evaluating different sales training providers:

Be aware of pros and cons when choosing a sales training provider.

Pros:

Improved Sales Performance: Effective sales training can lead to improved sales skills, better closing rates, and increased revenue for your organisation.

Customisation: Many top sales training providers offer customised programs to meet your specific industry, company, and sales team needs.

Experienced Instructors: The best providers often employ experienced sales professionals and trainers who can offer valuable real-world insights.

Comprehensive Curriculum: Leading sales training providers typically offer a wide range of training topics, from basic sales techniques to advanced strategies.

Measurable Results: They often provide tools and metrics to track the effectiveness of the training, allowing you to measure the ROI.

Networking Opportunities: Some providers offer opportunities for sales professionals to network with peers and industry experts.

Continuous Learning: Many top providers offer ongoing training and support to ensure that sales teams continue to improve over time.

Cons:

Cost: High-quality sales training can be expensive, especially if you opt for customised programs or top-tier providers.

Time-Consuming: Sales training often takes time away from selling activities, which can impact short-term results.

One-Size-Fits-All: Some providers may have a rigid curriculum that doesn’t fully align with your unique sales challenges.

Resistance to Change: Sales teams may resist new training methods or approaches, leading to slow adoption and implementation.

Lack of Follow-Up: Even with excellent training, if there’s no ongoing support or reinforcement, the initial benefits may diminish over time.

Limited Industry Knowledge: Some providers may not have expertise in your specific industry, which can limit the relevance of their training.

Overpromising: Be cautious of providers who promise miraculous results or quick fixes, as sales improvement often requires ongoing effort and practice.

When you are looking for the best sales and leadership training provider, it’s essential to consider your organisation’s unique needs, budget, and long-term goals. Research, reviews, and referrals from other businesses in your industry can help you identify the best fit for your sales team. Additionally, make sure to assess the potential provider’s track record and success stories to ensure they can deliver on their promises.

Contact KONA today to discuss what we can do for your business. Call 1300 611 288 or

Email info@kona.com.au


Sales Pipeline Funnel

The Importance of Sales Pipeline Management

A sales pipeline allows you to track the sales process more effectively, but it also helps you plan and evaluate activities at each stage.

Sales pipeline management can provide insight into the sales process to examine what’s working and what needs attention.

Every part of the sales pipeline should be tracked and measured. Sales pipeline training is a crucial component of sales development and can offer several benefits to both individual sales representatives and organisations as a whole.

As a sales leader, pipeline management will give you an understanding into how well your marketing is working and where prospects are not converting.  It will also help you evaluate performance by members of your sales team.

By tracking each stage, you can evaluate the impact of your marketing.  If your inbound marketing efforts are failing to convert sales from qualified leads, it may indicate you need to change strategies or train your team on how to close.  If your salespeople aren’t converting sales qualified leads at the rate you need, they may need additional support.

Pipeline management will give you insight into how well your marketing is working and where prospects are not converting.  It will help you evaluate performance of your sales team.

What should an Effective Sales Pipeline do?

  • Identify and target weak points in each stage of your pipeline
  • Pinpoint areas where additional coaching or sales training can help
  • Understand and analyse why some deals didn’t close
  • Prepare for potential sales growth or downturns

Do you want:

  • Improved Sales Performance?
  • More consistency with sales numbers?

KONA’s Pipeline Management Training is the answer you are looking for. Let us tell you why.

 Enhances Your Sales Skills

The KONA Pipeline training programs will cover a wide range of sales skills, including:

  • Prospecting
  • Qualifying leads
  • Objection handling
  • Negotiation
  • Closing techniques

Salespeople can sharpen their skills and adapt to changing market conditions.

 Better Forecasting

With a well-trained sales team, organisations can more accurately forecast future sales revenue.

This helps in budgeting, resource allocation, and overall business planning.

Reduces Sales Cycle Length

KONA Sales training will teach techniques for moving deals through the pipeline more efficiently, potentially reducing the length of the sales cycle. This means faster revenue generation.

Customer Relationship Building

KONA’s Sales pipeline training emphasises the importance of building strong customer relationships. This will lead to higher customer satisfaction, repeat business, and referrals.

A sales pipeline will improve sales performance and provide more consistency with sales numbers.

Boosts Confidence

KONA Pipeline training will boost the confidence of your salespeople, which will have a positive impact on their interactions with customers. Confident sales reps are more likely to close deals successfully.

Give your Team a Competitive Advantage

Well-trained sales teams will gain a competitive edge in the marketplace. They are better equipped to:

  • Understand customer needs
  • Position their products or services effectively
  • Outperform competitors

 Reduce Turnover

Investing in the development of your sales team will boost morale and job satisfaction, potentially reducing turnover.

A stable sales team leads to more consistent sales results.

KONA’s sales pipeline training is a valuable investment for both sales professionals and your business.

It will lead to improved sales performance, increased revenue, and a more competitive position in the market.

Get help managing your Pipeline

KONA’s Pipeline Management Training: If you want to give your sales team a competitive advantage and teach them how to effectively manage their pipelines, you can find out more about working with us here.

KONA’s Services: If you’re a business leader and you would like to know more about the services that the KONA Group can offer your business, click here.

Meet our team: We have many consultants in the KONA Group, all experts in their field. Click here to meet our team.

Call KONA on 1300 611 288 or Email info@kona.com.au


Why is my Sales Team ‘Busy’ but not Producing results?

It’s easy for salespeople to get caught up in the daily whirlwind of activities and tasks.

They might appear busy, but the critical question for sales managers and leaders is whether their sales team is truly focusing on what is important. As a sales manager, your job is to ensure targets are being hit. When they aren’t, it can be one of your hardest tasks to find out why.  

So, what does it mean to be “busy” in sales, and what are some strategies for ensuring your salespeople prioritise what truly matters?

Garret Norris and John Wright of the KONA Group, Delivering a Sales Training Workshop

The Perils of being Busy

Busyness can be deceptive. Salespeople can spend hours each day on various tasks, e.g.

  • Answering emails
  • Attending meetings
  • Completing administrative work

Yet fail to make significant progress towards their sales goals.

This phenomenon, often referred to as the “activity trap,” can cause a decrease in productivity, frustration, and missed sales opportunities, the list goes on.

Why do salespeople fall into the busyness trap?

Lack of Priorities

Without clear priorities, salespeople will tend to focus on low-impact tasks while neglecting high-impact activities like:

  • Prospecting
  • Following up on leads
  • Closing deals

Overemphasis on Routine Tasks

Mundane and routine tasks can consume a significant portion of a salesperson’s day, leaving them with little time and energy for strategic activities.

Distractions

Constant interruptions, including unnecessary meetings and non-essential emails, can divert salespeople’s attention from what truly matters. Studies have shown that an average of around 84% of people get distracted at work, and the most common distractions include:

  • Emails
  • Phone calls/texts
  • Co-workers
  • The Internet

Ineffective Time Management

Poor time management skills can result in wasted hours and a sense of busyness without accomplishment.

Did you know that 63% of sales reps don't ask for the sale at the end of a sales conversation?

Focusing on What’s Important

To be successful in sales, you need to shift the focus from busyness to activities that drive results. Here are some key areas to concentrate on:

Prospecting: Identifying and reaching out to potential customers is at the core of sales.

Ensure that your sales team allocates sufficient time for prospecting activities, such as:

  • Researching leads
  • Making initial contact

Building Relationships: Building strong relationships with prospects and clients can lead to repeat business and referrals.

Encourage your salespeople to invest time in nurturing these relationships.

Effective Communication: Train your team to communicate effectively, whether it’s through phone calls, emails, or face-to-face meetings.

Clear communication can make all the difference in closing deals.

A quote on effective communication from Garret Norris, CEO of the KONA Group.

Product Knowledge: Statistics have shown that salespeople who have specific product education can sell up to 123% more than those without.

Salespeople should have an in-depth understanding of your products or services. A well-informed salesperson will undoubtably be able to address customer questions and objections more effectively.

Time Management: Teach your team time management skills to help them to:

  • Prioritise tasks
  • Allocate time to high-impact activities

Strategies for Ensuring Focus is on What’s Important

Now that we’ve established the significance of focusing on what’s important in sales, let’s explore strategies to help your salespeople avoid the busyness trap:

Set Clear Goals: Use S.M.A.R.T Goal setting – specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely sales goals.

This helps salespeople understand what they should or shouldn’t prioritise.

Invest in Training and Development: Invest in ongoing training to improve your team’s:

  • Sales skills
  • Product knowledge
  • Time management skills

A well-trained sales team is more likely to focus on what matters.

Use Technology: Implementing sales tools and technology that automates routine tasks, allows your team to spend more time on high-value activities.

Regularly Review Processes: Continuously assess your sales processes to identify bottlenecks and areas for improvement.

Streamlining processes can free up time for essential tasks.

Monitor Progress:

  • Keep track of your team’s performance through regular reporting and meetings
  • Provide feedback and coaching to ensure alignment with strategic goals

Being “busy” in sales doesn’t always equate to being productive or producing results.

Salespeople need guidance and support to prioritise what really matters.

You can help your sales team focus on what’s important and drive success in your organisation. Just remember that it’s not about how busy they appear, but about the value they bring to the table and the impact they make on your bottom line.

Contact KONA to discuss how our tailored Sales Training Programs can have a positive impact on your sales team.

Call 1300 611 288 or Email info@kona.com.au